"A child's learning is the function more of the characteristics of his classmates than those of the teacher." James Coleman, 1972

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Duncan's Charters Dumping Students: Parents Call Turnaround a Sham

After the standing ovation died down for Mr. Duncan at the last CPS Board Meeting conducted by Daley's appointed stooges, a group of parents from PURE (Parents United for Responsible Education) brought to the floor some inconvenient truths about the Chicago Miracle. From the Sun-Times:

A parade of teachers, parents and students complained Wednesday about the new breed of Chicago schools President-elect Barack Obama touted the day before when he tapped Chicago's school chief to be his U.S. secretary of education.

The Chicago Board of Education meeting began with a standing ovation for schools CEO Arne Duncan. Board President Rufus Williams told a packed chamber that Obama had "identified Arne early'' but then "looked around the country to find the best person possible. He ended up with Arne.''

But not everyone was full of praise for Duncan's initiatives. With the school closing hit list due next month, teachers charged that CPS charter schools -- which have replaced some closed schools -- are "destroying'' neighborhood schools by luring away high-scoring kids. Meanwhile, they said, neighborhood schools are being forced to absorb low-scoring kids.

Jesse Sharkey, a Senn High union delegate, said that after a fight at a charter school in March, 19 kids showed up at Senn with letters saying they had been "dis-enrolled'' from the school. Charters "are allowed to kick people off the island,'' Sharkey said. "We're supposed to take all children. How is that fair?"

"I couldn't agree with you more,'' Duncan responded. He said CPS would investigate allegations of schools dumping kids for academic reasons. However, charters are allowed to create and enforce their own disciplinary code.

Julie Woestehoff of Parents United for Responsible Education said the "turnaround'' at Sherman School of Excellence was actually "a sham.'' . . . .

1 comment:

  1. Anonymous12:28 PM

    The problem that is the real 800-lbs gorilla in the room is the large percentage of kids in inner-city/urbam schools who actively FIGHT the educational process IN THE CLASSROOM and rob, on a daily basis, the educations of legions of kids who DO come to school to learn.

    This can comprise as much as 1/3 to 1/2 of some classes;And if you think that a good lesson-plan
    is what is needed, or merely a "better teacher" is the answer, think again.

    These kids are being ignored by the system.

    Classroom teachers CAN'T
    ignore them---They are in our faces daily.

    These kids need A NEW, INNOVATIVE KIND OF ENVIRONMENT that addresses the chaos within them in a positive way, and leads them on
    a path to real learning.

    To throw these kids into regular classrooms is EVIL, IMO.

    But school administrations all over the country do this every day, without a thought.

    Ofcourse charter schools kick out these kids--There is no profit or glory (high test scores) in these kids---Just NEED. They tend to destroy learning environments--It's part of some kid's psychological makeup!

    They really need help they can't get in regular, traditional classrooms, which depend heavily on student cooperation and self-control to
    function effectively.

    These kids should not be allowed in regular classrooms until they can WORK WITHIN the classroom environment, and not against it.

    But until an effective alternative learning environment for these children has been found,
    there is no other choice!

    That, to me, is one of Public Education's
    biggest failures.

    And NCLB is actually USING THESE DISRUPTIVE KIDS to discredit public schools so charters can
    take over.

    But--Lo and behold! By showing that THEY can't handle these children either, the Charters are now revealing the truth about America's "bottom
    students"---NOBODY HAS CARED ENOUGH ABOUT THEM TO ACTUALLY COME UP WITH A SOLUTION FOR THEM, which would require creativity, effort and MONEY.

    Public Schools shovel them into regular classes and then blame teachers when they have trouble teaching, controlling their class, or even explaining a lesson over the disruptive behavior
    of these very needy, dysfunctional kids.

    It is an inconvenient Truth----But NO ONE as of yet, has found an answer for these neediest (and most-troubled) kids, of which, America has produced (for whatever reasons), LEGIONS.